HALF DAY PRESCHOOL
We are thrilled to offer this program to those who are interested in having their children involved in an educational and social setting on a campus with much to offer!
What makes Peace of Mind different than other programs?
One aspect that makes us very different from other programs is the way that we structure the children’s time with us. We believe children learn by doing, and play is their work. We offer a setting that has a good balance of teacher-initiated and child-initiated activities, but all of which are planned and structured by the teacher who has specific objectives in mind. The teacher’s ability to pick up on the children’s cues and ask open-ended questions can further enhance the children’s interest in each activity they try. You won’t find the teacher simply “maintaining” or managing the classroom, but rather you will find the teacher involved and “engaging” the classroom as an active partner, listening to and encouraging the children’s work and play.
What are the teacher’s qualifications?
POM requires that our lead teachers have a four-year degree in Early Childhood Education, Elementary Education or another closely related field. Each lead teacher works closely with the founder, who holds a Master’s Degree in Early Childhood Education. We look for teachers who are especially patient, caring, kind and understanding, and who appreciate the delicate balance of giving students the time to work independently and to interact with the teacher.
What are your goals for the children?
Our main goal for the children in the half-day program is to develop the desire they already have to learn, and to prepare them for a life long love of learning as they begin a long journey through their school years. We wish to help each child learn and grow as much as possible within the scope of each school year. That is why, we benchmark each child at the beginning of each school year, and set goals that are individual to the child in partnership with parents, and then use these goals as we are setting the curriculum for the entire class. Of course, we have minimums that we expect each class to meet that are “on track” for a child’s age and stage of development, but most importantly, we take into consideration what each parent has in mind for their child, and what the child wishes to accomplish as well.
How is discipline handled?
Our primary form of discipline is to use redirection. We also make eye contact, use reasoning skills and help the children to understand and make decisions that everyone can be satisfied with. We DO NOT use time out as a regular form of discipline. Children are also involved in developing a set of classroom expectations, and for determining logical consequences if expectations are not met.
How do you assess the children’s progress?
We use a portfolio system to assess the children in several different areas and tasks each month. We hold conferences twice a year, in the fall and in the spring. At the fall conference, we “show” you one sample of each of those tasks and where your child is starting out for the year, and also ask you to share your goals for your child with the teacher. Then at the spring conference, we share three or four samples of each portfolio task and celebrate how much your child has learned and progressed during the year. Assessment is ongoing through the school year, and is used by the teacher to shape the lesson plans for the entire group!
What if my child is not potty trained?
Children do not need to be potty trained to be a part of this program. We recommend keeping a change of clothes in your child’s backpack in case of an accident or spill.
Does my child need to be three years old by September 1st?
Your child does not need to be three by September 1st to attend our program, they must however, be at least 33 months old by Sept. 1st to apply. They also need to be “nearly” potty trained. Besides the fact that your child must be “nearly” potty trained, the biggest thing to consider is the structure and philosophy of the program and whether or not you feel it will work for your child.
Do you have transportation?
For reasons of timing and safety, we do not provide any transportation to or from the program for any of the sessions offered.
What if I can’t be there to pick up by 12:00?
The class you choose for your child begins and ends at a certain time, just like a swimming class would at the YMCA. However, additional care may be available by contract, for a supplementary fee, if arrangements are made in advance. The additional fee for child care after class is $13.00 per hour, for a child already enrolled in the preschool program. A late fee of $15 for every quarter hour will apply if a child remains after class has ended, and previous arrangements have not been made for care.
Why is your tuition different from other part day programs in the area, like the one offered by my church or the local school district?
Our rates may be different for a couple of reasons. First, we are a completely independent program. We don’t receive a subsidy from anyone – not a church or the local school district, or anyone, so our tuition covers the entire cost of running the program, where many other programs may not cover their entire cost. Secondly, it has always been our goal to provide the absolute best in quality of care and programming. To do so requires that we set high standards for our teaching team. We charge the lowest rate that we can, while maintaining the high quality that is essential for our children and families. We believe that once you experience our program, you will quickly understand the differences between our program and all others, and that you will find our program to be a good value for your child!